I'm about to start a milling machine, but I'm kinda trying to avoid reinventing the wheel.
I built quite a few foam cutters allready, from the cheap hobby ones, up to full production ones, that go non stop 10 hrs/day.
The requirments are the following:
material to mill: foam, XPS and EPS
working time: 10-12hrs straight. Very long cycles.
feedrates, not sure yet, but I'm deffinetly interested in the highest possible
the shapes to be milled consist in highly detailed surfaces
My questions are regarding the drive mechs. As you all know none are perfect, and none will suit all demands. I don't know what's the best compromise.
Considering this will be an extremely dusty environment (fine dust) what do you recommend me using?
If there's anybody who already walked this path, I would highly apreciate the help.
When I started I also had similar wants. The guy who sold me the parts told me to get strong motors and long threaded ball screws.
Stepper motors work best at lower speeds and having long pitch threaded screws makes good use of that.
In another thread on this forum I read that inertia of the screw spindles it the biggest factor in acceleration, not the weight of the gantry. In that respect, using long pitch screws also makes sense. I use 16x16 mm for x and y, 16x5 for z and have a simmilar size mill.
I found that the actual computer and software makes a big difference in performance. Started with emc on ubuntu 8.04 which was slow at 300 mm/min, when I switched to 10.04, feed could be increased to 6000 mm/min.